Day 9

Mile 3623.  On the road again. Family reunion, ho!  Everyone's a little cranky nine days in, but we had a nice visit with uncle and aunt-to-be last night and home is in sight.  We can do this.

Mile 3675.  Talking with Shmoogie about having only one day left in our trip.  She wants to leave early tomorrow so we get home early.  We agree.  "Will it be a long drive tomorrow?"  "A little long, but not so long."

Mile 3712.  Starting to think ahead.  What to do with the kids while everything we own is being unloaded into the house?

Mile 3783.  Family reunions are amazing.  Leaving three short hours later, I ask the kids how was that? and they grin and say "Happy!"

Mile 3898.  Pit stop at McDonald's.  Still toying with the idea of driving straight through today.  Shmoogie and Mr. P are both in favor.  We tell them we'll get as far as we can safely.  Shmoogie says, "We want to get there safely but we also want to get there as fast as possible."  We get back on the highway going west.  This is not a good sign.

Mile 3904.  Back on the highway heading east.

Mile 4055. Final clock change accomplished.

Mile 4107. West Virginia!!!

Mile 4121.  Kids so excited to get happy meals for dinner.  I didn't know McDonald's won't give you a happy meal without knowing if it's for a boy or a girl.  Can we just stop it with all that crap already?

Mile 4138. A deer leaps into the highway not too far ahead and my brain is whirring trying to determine how to react (a deer leapt into the front of my car once, the day after I got my license; it's not a good thing to have happen to you) but the deer's brain is whirring too.  It springs straight up in the air, twists 180 degrees, and bounds right off the highway again.

Mile 4440.  Well out of the mountains now.  I've had a nap.  The roads have been so empty tonight.

Mile 4517.  Last state boundary!  Feeling like road tripping across the county is actually more surreal than flying.  Especially when you're ending up on familiar ground.

Mile 4531.  Drive by home.

Mile 4533.  Hotel.  Everyone awake.  Bayboh a little wild, tumbling on the bed while Shmoogie looks miserably put upon trying to sleep next to him while I get the pack n play set up.  Then, very quickly, everyone asleep again.